Microsoft is considering releasing a slimmer, cheaper, and scaled back version of the Xbox One in late 2016 in order to compete with the Apple TV, according to a report from Business Insider.

We'd advise not to get your hopes up though as this is still very much unconfirmed. The information -- which comes from long-time Microsoft reporter Brad Sams -- states that this new Xbox...err, box will NOT play Xbox One games but rather apps and games from the Windows Store marketplace. In other words, don't expect to play Halo 5: Guardians on this thing if this report is true.

The report also remarks that the smaller Xbox will be a separate SKU, meaning it will not replace the current Xbox One console bundles already on the market but rather act as a separate entity.

This rumour is rather difficult to read. While it isn't all that surprising Microsoft might want to build a device to compete with the Apple, Google, and Roku boxes out there, we aren't entirely sure using the Xbox moniker as a way to entice consumers is the smartest play. The Xbox name is recognizable among gamers everywhere -- as well as big name franchises like Halo and Gears of War -- so it may be slightly misleading.

On another note, if Microsoft is to repeat similar hardware refresh patterns as they did with the Xbox 360 last gen, then 2016 would be the perfect time to redesign the current Xbox One hardware into a slimmer and more attractive one. Having two Xbox-related devices come out around the same time could possibly cause even more confusion. It's also known that the new Xbox dashboard is running a modified version of Windows 10, so it may already be possible for apps from the Windows Store to work on the Xbox One.

This is, of course, pure speculation on our part but it does result in some nice conversation. So what do you think about this Xbox device? Are you interested in something like this?

[source businessinsider.com]